Monday, August 5, 2013
Cab Fare, New Friends, Fireworks and Being Becky #Blogher13
Hey everyone! I'm happy to have arrived safely back home last Sunday. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to go to my first ever blogging conference which happened to be Blogher13 in Chicago. Having no idea what to expect out of the experience I have to say my expectations were honestly very low. I figured with all the hustle and bustle of the big city I would find myself swallowed up among the masses and take home very little useful knowledge about myself and blogging in general. I know this makes me sound like a true pessimist even though I'm really not, I promise. I guess I just didn't want to come home disappointed. The expense of this trip was very high, and I'm still working out the numbers and my budget to see if the cost was worth what I gained, but the more I think about it I have no doubt it was worth every penny. Can I really put a dollar sign on friendships?
As you may know, I'm extremely attached to my little guy. I've only been away from the Booper one night. I have separation anxiety. Going away for 4 nights to Chicago was a huge step for me, but knowing my little guy was in good hands with Mammaw and Pappaw made it easier. The days leading up to my trip were actually the hardest for me. Every hug from the Booper I felt that a weight was pushing down on my chest, and I didn't want to leave him. I cried once and told no one that I was seriously thinking of cancelling to stay home simply because the thought of being away made me feel sick. The more I felt the anxiety the more I knew I had to go just to prove to myself I could. We both survived, and we both thrived..even apart. Did I miss him, absolutely! Did he miss his mommy? Yes. Did we both need a break from each other. I think we did. So off I went on a plane to Chicago taking my steps to being Becky from The Mommy Island.
I arrived in Chicago having never met my hotel room mate, Jenni from Sweet Pennies from Heaven. We were fast friends. Jenni is a sweetheart just like you would expect from reading her blog. She immediately set me at ease and we made our way to meet up with 2 other bloggers who would share a cab with us to the hotel. My trip was off to an amazing start. I have no complaints about the flight, airport or the cab ride (except the cost).
I had so many exciting things planned for this short four day trip, but first on my agenda was partying with some blogging buddies from Madame Deals Media on a Sea Dog Cruise! My first night in Chicago set the tone with fireworks. Real fireworks blasting off from the Navy Pier lighting up the sky and reflecting off the water, and we had a "front row" view from the boat. I absolutely love fireworks, you know the real ones that sometimes make you a bit nervous and excited at the same time? Yeah, those. Those fireworks are my favorite. My hubby loves fireworks too so I was thinking of him the whole time and how much he would have enjoyed the show and the boat ride. Seeing the city from this perspective was worth arriving a day early, the buildings were gorgeous at night. With the moon rising over the water and music playing on the boat the mood was pleasant and relaxed. I just sat and took it all in. Looking back I wish I was the type to be more forward so I would have made more connections with fellow bloggers. Still, I had a wonderful time despite my lack of mingling skills. Our next trip to Chicago I will definitely be looking at taking my family on a Sea Dog Cruise, the whole experience was fun!
Packing to come back home I had lots of swag from the brands I met up with, but my mind was also packed full of unforgettable memories of time spent with friends. It was great to have the chance to just think of myself and cater to my own wants for a few days. There are times in my life I feel like in being everything to everyone I start losing myself and I don't have much left to give. Coming home from this trip I feel renewed and now I'm ready to re-focus my energy towards what matters most in everything.
The people who've found their place in my heart.
This is just the tip of the iceberg more to come on my trip to Chicago!